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Pastor Colin Davids multimillion-rand Ponzi scheme case postponed to November

Pastor Colin Davids, of the New Directions Church in Parow, ran a company called Platinum Forex. Picture: Bheki Radebe/African News Agency

Pastor Colin Davids, of the New Directions Church in Parow, ran a company called Platinum Forex. Picture: Bheki Radebe/African News Agency

Published Oct 27, 2021

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Cape Town - The Bellville Commercial Crimes Court has postponed the long-running case of Colin Davids, the pastor accused of running a multimillion-rand Ponzi scheme, to November 29.

Davids, of the New Directions Church in Parow, ran a company called Platinum Forex. He appeared in court with co-accused Derek Bredekamp, who was arrested in 2018 by the Hawks for colluding with Davids.

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Bredekamp worked as Platinum Forex’s marketing manager.

NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the two stand charged with 100 counts of fraud, a count of money laundering, a count of Contravention of Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, and a count of the Contravention of the Banks Act.

The case goes back to 2015 when the Western Cape High Court granted the provincial National Prosecuting Authority’s Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) an order freezing R138 million in assets belonging to Platinum Forex and Davids.

In affidavits filed in court, the AFU presented evidence that Platinum Forex, a close corporation based in Parow, unlawfully collected more than R100 million from unsuspecting members of the public under the guise that it was a lawful investor that invests in foreign exchange investments, also known as forex.

In April 2017, Davids lost the first round of the case in court after a judge ordered that R100 million in funds be handed back to his investors.

At the time, the court said that of the more than R300 million that was initially invested in Platinum Forex, only about R100 million remained, and the judge ruled that a curator would oversee the process of distributing the frozen funds to investors.

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The court papers said that the actions of Platinum Forex contravened various provisions of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, and the Banks Act.

This is because Platinum Forex was not registered as a financial service provider and was not legally allowed to conduct the business of a banker.

The AFU’s joint investigations with its partners, the Financial Intelligence Centre, the Financial Services Board and the Hawks, revealed that, instead of investing the monies it collected, Platinum Forex used some of the funds received from the public for its own benefit.

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Platinum Forex also made false promises to members of the public that their so-called investments would yield interest returns of between 48% and 84%.

Platinum Forex began operations in August 2013, but contrary to promises made to its clients that their money would be invested in the forex market, some of the money was in fact invested in short term investment accounts.

These accounts were held with ACM Gold, a Gauteng-based entity Forex Trading (Pty) Ltd and Nedbank.

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The court papers said that Davids used some of the funds invested with him to pay for two properties in Plattekloof and Hermanus, cars for his wife and household expenses from retail stores such as Woolworths, Checkers and Pick n Pay.

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Cape Argus

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